Cody Beals of Canada edged Felipe Azevedo of Portugal and Agnieszka Jerzyk of Poland dominated the women's field at Ironman 70.3 Taiwan.
Beals overcame a 1:23 deficit to swim leader Andy Potts with a dominating 2:01:09 bike leg, then cruised with a 2nd-best 1:13:28 run to a 6:14 margin of victory over Felipe Azevedo of Portugal.
Beals’ vlctory was his career fourth at the 70.3 distance after wins at Eagleman in 2015 and 2016 and Ecuador in 2016. In 2017, Beals scored a 9th at Texas 70.3 and 6th at Ecuador 70.3 with seven more 70.3 finishes ranging from 2nd to 4th.
Jerzyk began with a tied-for-women’s-best swim, opened a 4:09 lead on the bike leg, and held off a fast-closing Lesley Smith of the U.S. by 1:15 for the win.
Andy Potts of the U.S. led the swim in 24:16 which gave him a 1:05 lead on Felipe Azevedo of Portugal, 1:21 on Tuan Chun Chang of Taiwan, 1:23 on Cody Beals of Canada, 1:27 on Fraser Walsh of Australia, 2:12 on Guy Crawford of New Zealand, 2:14 on Tim Van Berkel of Australia, and 2:16 on Alessandro Degasperi of Italy.
After 27km of the bike leg, Beals shot to the lead with a 17 seconds margin on Potts, 1:40 on Chang, 1:41 on Azevedo, 2:25 on Degasperi, 2:27 on Van Berkel, 2:30 on Rudolf Naude of South Africa, and 2:30 on Crawford. Two thirds through the ride, Beals widened his lead to 2:21 on Potts and 4:23 on Van Berkel, followed closely by a pack including Crawford, Lukasz Kalaszcynski of Poland, Azevedo, TC Chang of Taiwan and Naude.
After a race-best 2:01:09 bike split, Beals led into T2 by 5:10 over Potts, 6:08 on Van Berkel and Kalasczynski, 6:10 on Crawford, 6:11 on Chang, and 6:17 on Azevedo.
After 5km of the run, Beals maintained a 5:55 lead on Azevedo, 6:16 on Kalasczynski, 6:26 on Potts, and 6:44 on Chang. While Azevedo was running fastest at a 3:14 per kilometer pace, Beals was only losing 5 seconds per kilometer and seemed in no danger. By 5 miles, Van Berkel cut his deficit to Azevedo, 6:44 behind the leader and 30 seconds ahead of Potts, while Kalasczynski trailed by 7:43.
After a second fastest 1:13:28 run, Beals hit the finish in 3:46:39 with a 6:14 margin of victory on Azevedo, who closed with a race-best 1:13:23 run. Van Berkel, who ran a tied-for third best 1:14:18 half marathon, finished 3rd, 55 seconds behind Azevedo. Potts, who closed with a 1:16:24 run, took 4th place, 1:26 behind Van Berkel and 50 seconds ahead of 5th place Guillaume Lecallier of France, who ran 1:14:18.
Laura Dennis of Australia and Agnieszka Jerzyk of Poland led the women’s swim in equal 28:30 splits with Lesley Smith of the U.S. trailing by 8 seconds, Kirra Seidel of Australia 1 minute behind, and Kate Bevilaqua of Australia another 8 seconds back.
After 27km of the bike leg Jerzyk took a 1:26 lead on Dennis, 2:21 on Smith, 3:41 on Seidel, 4:29 on Magna Nieuwoudt of South Africa, and 4:31 on Bevilaqua. At 58km, Jerzyk held a 2:46 lead on Dennis, 4:20 on Smith, 5:46 on Nieuwoudt, and 5:50 on Seidel. After a women’s best 2:16:49 bike split, Jerzyk led the women into T2 with 4:09 on Dennis and 6:33 on Smith.
After 5km, Dennis shaved Jerzyk’s lead to 3:23. Smith ran 3rd, 5:20 down while Seidel was 4th (+8:10), Nieuwoudt 5th (+10:44), and Erin Green 5th (+11:30). After 11km of the run, Jerzyk maintained a 3:44 lead on Dennis and 4:04 on Smith. While Jerzyk maintained her pace and her lead, Lesley Smith charged past Dennis to take 2nd place at the 16km mark.
After a women’s 4th-fastest 1:28:36 run, Jerzyk finished in 4:21:21 with a 1:15 margin of victory over Lesley Smith (1:23:20 run), and 3:07 over 3rd-place Laura Dennis (1:27:55 run).
Ironman 70.3 Taiwan
March 17, 2018
S 1.2 mi. / B 56 mi. / R 13.1 mi.
1. Cody Beals (CAN) 3:46:39
2. Felipe Azevedo (PRT) 3:52:53
3. Tim Van Berkel (AUS) 3:53:35
4. Andy Potts (USA) 3:55:01
5. Guillaume Lecallier (FRA) 3:55:51
1. Agnieszka Jerzyk (POL) 4:21:21
2. Lesley Smith (USA) 4:22:36
3. Laura Dennis (AUS) 4:24:48
4. Kirra Seidel (AUS) 4:26:31
5. Erin Green (USA) 4:32:42